Returning to work after a career break
If you are returning to work following a career break, there are a number of schemes and initiatives available within RDM that can assist.
RDM supports informal and formal flexible working arrangements where these are operationally possible. Flexible working arrangements can take many forms from the traditional part-time arrangements to compressed hours, job-sharing, staggered hours, term-time only working, or working from home ("teleworking"). For informal arrangements, discuss with your line manager. Employees with 26 weeks continuous service have the right to request a formal flexible working arrangement. If the request is granted, this will be a permanent change to your terms and conditions unless otherwise agreed. Learn more about flexible working at the University.
Finding a mentor
Mentoring is a powerful personal development tool, which can be an effective way of helping you to progress in your career and life more generally. Some people have found mentoring very useful when returning to work after a career break and the RDM mentoring scheme will match mentors with relevant experience(s) with a mentee who wishes to benefit from their experience. Find out more about the RDM Mentoring Scheme.
Family Friendly Benefits
RDM also has a number of family friendly benefits that can be very helpful to people returning to work after a career break.
Funding for researchers returning to work after parental leave
There are funding streams dedicated to assisting researchers who are returning to work after leaving to start a family, or for people who would like to explore the possibility of funding specifically tailored to flexible working patterns. Within RDM enquires should be directed to Ruth McCaffrey, Research Strategy Co-ordinator.
Two funding streams currently identified as particularly suitable for parents are outlined below, if you are interested in either of these, please contact the admin team of your prospective division for more information.
Returning Carer's Fund
The Returning Carer’s Fund was established as part of the Vice-Chancellor’s Diversity Fund for the advancement of diversity among academic and research staff at Oxford. Applications are invited from women and men for funding to support the development of their research career following a break to care for a child or close relative. The expectation is that awards will normally be up to £5k.
These are unique fellowships designed to return Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics professionals to their careers after a break. Fellows normally carry out their research part-time over 2 years, in a university or research establishment in the UK. The Fellowships are flexible and include a tailored training programme designed to update skills and knowledge and support you in your return to research.
This scheme is for outstanding scientists in the UK at an early stage of their research career who require a flexible working pattern due to personal circumstances such as parenting or caring responsibilities or health issues. Female candidates are particularly invited to apply.
The scheme covers all areas of the life and physical sciences, including engineering, but excluding clinical medicine.